In 1980, the year before I made Jesus Lord, I had to go to see the doctor because of the arthritis at least once a week. I was taking up to 18 aspirin a day and receiving a gold shot injection each visit. I was at the time working for Kraft Foods in their payroll department. One day my supervisor told me that if I kept missing work because of the appointments I would lose my job. It was not like I was terribly busy as many times I had to find things to do. I arranged that the medical room at Kraft could give me my injections, but I was still required to go get blood tests every two weeks. One morning after I went for those tests I came back to work but wasn’t allowed in. I was told to sit in a small office and wait for my supervisor. He came in and told me that he had warned me and now he was letting me go.
I was devastated. My doctor was also very upset by this and at that time was working with a bunch of other doctors and the government to try and bring in a law that would protect people like me. He added me to a list of people that he might need to testify to the government about mistreatment. But the law was passed and I was spared that. But I am glad that I played a small part in bringing a law that would give workers more rights when it came to illness.
Working had kept my mind off a lot of my troubles and had given me some stability. But now that security was gone. It was just another one of those circumstances that led me to Christ.
After I came to the Lord, I set out looking for a job again. One of the elders in the church gave a place where I could go and apply. It was at an over the counter pharmaceutical company where they made mouth wash, toothpaste, shaving cream, etc….. The work was quite physical, but God had healed me to the point where I could do that stuff. The manager took me down to meet the man I would be working with. As soon as I saw the guy I knew right away he was a fellow believer. He didn’t have to even tell me. I said to him; "You are a Christian aren’t you?" He told me he was a pastor at a small church in the eastern townships. God knew that in my early walk I needed to be surrounded by believer’s in every area of my life. What a great God He is!
It is amazing the things that God will change in your life overnight when you make Him Lord. I used to swear up a storm. Every second word out of my mouth used to be a curse word. All of a sudden it was gone. It was like God took some Holy Ghost soap and washed out my mouth. But not only that. When I’d hear others swearing, my ears would cringe. Especially when I’d hear the Lord’s name taken in vain.
But there were other things God wanted to work on as well, such as my pride. I had a lot of it. You’ve heard of the Proverb, pride goes before a fall. Well it happened to me literally. Working with a brother in Christ was one thing, but having him tell me what to do was another for me. I began to argue with him about the way to do things. One day I was pretty angry against him for something and as I was rounding a corner my feet went out from underneath me and I fell on my tail bone. They had just put some new tiles down on the floor and there was some oil on them which I didn’t see. Someone drove me to the hospital where I found out I had a severely bruised tail bone. I would be off work for at least 2 weeks. It would give me a lot of time to reflect on the way I acted. When I went back I apologised for my behaviour. But I also resigned as I also realized that my body was not able keep up with the physical work that was demanded. I last saw that brother at a Lieghten Ford crusade the next year and we left on good terms with all forgiven.
The next job I got was in payroll at Maislin Trucking. My cousin and I prayed before I went to the interview that if that was the job for me I would get it. I went in there with such confidence that God would give me that job. I knew that I knew it was mine. I got the job that very day.
In my early walk with the Lord I was also put to the test by the enemy. I had moved out of my one room apartment and had taken a 3 and a half with my second youngest brother Gary. Gary was a believer as well and had been partially responsible for bringing me to the Lord. He went to another church downtown where he would sing and play guitar. It was him that first got me interested in contemporary Christian music. When he was about 1 or 2 years old he had meningitis and nearly died. They didn’t expect him to live. But people prayed and his life was spared. I thank God for that.
He used to have these terrible nightmares when he was living with me that satan was after him. He would be screaming for someone to help him and I would rush into his room to wake him up. There were so many nights like that. I wondered was it something that was left over from when he was a baby or was the enemy really attacking him. I knew very little about spiritual warfare at the time and didn’t know what to make of it.
But then strange things started happening to me as well. One night my brother was out and as I was reading in my room my cat jumped up and stared at the door. Her back arched and all her fur stood up straight. Something fell in the other room. I took a baseball bat to go and look. There was nothing and nothing had fallen and yet my cat was still acting strangely. After a while she settled down and I just laughed it off.
A couple of week’s later I had just come from my cousins house and was sitting at my bed when my cat started going crazy again. All of a sudden it was like an icy hand grabbed the back of my head and I was immobilised. Fear just crept all over me. I reached for the telephone and kept trying to call my cousins number. It seemed like forever to dial it. When I got through I explained to her what was happening. Right away together we just started pleading the blood of Jesus. As we prayed the hand withdrew and peace came back to me. I began to realize the power I now had over the enemy and used it to pray with my brother Gary so that he no longer had those dreams.
Is the enemy real? Yes he is. But he is no match for our Lord. The devil was defeated at the cross. Believers have nothing to fear from him. He cringes simply at the mention of Jesus name. What a happy day it will be when he finally gets his due.
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